This smells like a scam.

I put my boat on Craigslist, and I got this email:


The multiple reference to “the item” is a dead giveaway. The whole thing screams scam.
ETA: also, the pickup agent.

It matches the response to my Craigslist ad word for word, so yes definitely a scam.

Yep. That’s what I thought.

Got another email from an interested party. He sounds legit. Only when I googled his email address his phone number was in the 714 area code (Orange County). But that was in 2000. He says he’s local, but his phone number is an Arizona area code. I suppose he could have moved from SoCal to Arizona, and then moved up here in the span of 10 years. And he mentioned the boat in his email.

ETA: Thanks, fruitbat!


What’s their angle? Are they just trawling for e-mail addresses, or will there be some sort of elaborate paypal funds switcheroo to Johnny’s disfavor?

It’s usually the money switcheroo. “Oops, I sent $10,000 more than I should have. Please send back the extra.”

Yep…in Australia too…same same payPal bull…

That stinks so much like scam that my computer is now quite malodorous. Out, damned spot!

I wouldn’t consider mismatching area codes to be suspicious. I think its pretty common nowadays for people to (1) have a cellphone as their primary number and (2) keep it as they move around. I’ve been in California for 4 years but still have an Atlanta area code.

I listed a teak dining set and buffet +hutch on Kijiji this spring. I got the whole offer of them wanting to buy the item in question. To send it to London the UK and then they would ship it to Hong Kong. Yeah right. It was basically word for word the response to you.

I had several of these, and I ended up selling it to a dealer, not a response to my ad.

Wow! Somebody is buying a lot of boats, all over the world.

I never see these scams, not that I don’t doubt them at all but for my experience on craigslist. I put a riding mower up for sale and got the asking price two days later, guy came and got it and paid cash. I put a canoe up and sold it the same day, guy came and got it and paid cash. No one ever quibbled, tried to bargain or anything just straight forward transactions.

Funny cause I got this one off of craigslist for my car:

“Thanks for your response, I am quite okay with your price,I need you
to understand that i am willing and ready to purchase it right
away,put it off the AD site,consider me as your favorite buyer,and
Please note that i have a shipper/mover who handles my shipping
arrangement anywhere in the world,she would be coming for the
pickup,after you have received payment,which would be through
PayPal,If this is acceptable,advice soon as i am a Sailor and i am
buying this for my son as a surprise gift,So kindly get back to me
with the present condition of it and also some pictures of it,I can
only pay through PayPal at the moment as i do not have access to my
bank account online,but i have it attached to my PayPal account,and
this is why i insisted on using PayPal to pay,all i will need is your
pay pal email address to make the payments and some pictures if you do
not have a PayPal account yet,its pretty easy to set one up at,i will be expecting your email.I have a pick up agent
that will come for the pick up after payments has been sorted.”

Probably not a coincidence

I think that anybody who offers $100 above the asking price, for any reason, is a scammer.

If you are selling a** boat**, a legit buyer will say he likes your** boat**. A scammer will nearly always say he likes your** item**. I call this a dead giveaway. The guy is a phony.

Sorry, can someone please explain the end-game of this scam in more detail?

Providing PayPal information so that someone can transfer you some money doesn’t in and of itself leave you vulnerable to getting scammed.

Not in and of itself, no. However, it will be a basic overpayment scam. I don’t know enough about the details of how they would do this through Paypal to be able to lay that out for you. However the basic deal goes like this: they “accidentally” overpay by a large amount. They then demand that you refund them. After you do so, they stop payment on their payment to you in some manner, and you are out the amount you “refunded” to them.

This is why I only post my phone number. I want to talk to the person who is interested, hear his/her voice, etc. It’s still possible to be scammed that way, but not as anonymous. Also, I never, ever allow payment by any means other than cash on the line.

Paypal dispute is geared toward the buyer. So, once you’ve signed over the title of the boat, they ‘buyer’ just has to tell paypal that you didn’t give them the product and they’ll get their money back as well. If you’ve already taken the money out of your account, paypal will take it from the associated bank or just bill you and eventually submit you through a claims action.

Now, if the scammer accidentally adds a zero (not likely, because they’d have to have the money in the sending account), then asks for the overage in cash, you’re out again.

If the scammer is using stolen paypal account info, the REAL paypal account holder can submit complaint and (again) paypal takes the money from your account and returns it to the victim.

Scammers PAY through paypal but never accept money through paypal for this reason.

Gah. Craigslist.

Since the cost is essentially zero, it’s allowed every wannabe wheeler-dealer and amateur scam artist a place to practice their art.

I’ve been searching for a small-medium cabin cruiser for almost 2 months. I have cash, and am looking for something in very good shape, everything working, reasonably priced, and with a clear title. Not once have I found all four of those in the same place.

Examples so far:

  1. Wasn’t the same boat as in the picture (he copied one from google images. I guess he thought I wouldn’t wonder why his had the scratches and torn up seats.

  2. Nice price, good shape, but hesitant about the title. I researched the reg number (public record), found and visited the previous owner. In his 90’s, he’d been ripped off by our wannabe dealer who hadn’t re-titled the boat. TX has substantial fines for not titling in X days, to be paid by the last buyer. I laid out a specific set of steps required to sell it to me, involving lawyers, proper registration and correct title chain-of-custody. Not surprisingly, Buford passed on my offer and is trying to sell it out-of-state.

  3. “Excellent Shape”. With a broken swim platform, hole in the floorboards, busted prop, and outdrive skeg broken completely off. One of the cabin hatches (I’m not making this up) was completely gone and covered by a WalMart bag and duct-tape. I literally wouldn’t have accepted it free.

  4. “Got it in the divorce”. Had been sitting in the water, unused for two years with no bottom treatment. She had a trailer but couldn’t get it up the ramp with her Camry. Wanted me to buy it and then take a look at the bottom. Not even if you throw in your bottom, sweetheart. :rolleyes:

  5. “I’m not starting it until you show me the cash!” Seriously, shit-for-brains. If I buy your boat, it will be after a lengthy hour-plus lake test, followed by a thorough inspection by a mechanic, and if I’m leery at all, the title and registration docs will be gone over by a lawyer. This is all at my expense, but I ain’t showing you cash just for a ride.

  6. And the prize… Dinglefritz had a nice boat, just what I wanted but it was 3+ hours drive for me to see it. He wouldn’t sent me additional pics because it was “really inconvenient.”

I’ve become disillusioned. As near as I can tell almost 100 percent of the people on Craigslist are actively trying to scam in some way (except for us :))

I finally put my boat on Craigslist a couple of months ago. I had clear title, I set the price at roughly blue-book, and offered to provide test-drives, all maintenance records, and to bring it a reasonable distance to be inspected by a mechanic. It sold within hours, and the buyer told me it was the first thing he’d seen that wasn’t crap.

Good luck to you Johnny. It’s a cesspool.